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6 Post-Grad Cities to Start Researching Now

This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at Skidmore chapter.

Whether you’re applying to grad schools, looking for jobs/internships, or just ready to try some new scenery, now is the time to start researching post-grad location. As much as we’d rather not think about graduation right now, city searching can be a fun way to get excited about our unknown future! We’ve provided a brief guide on some major U.S. cities to get the process started (but don’t hesitate to look internationally too!).

New York, NY

Pros: Job opportunities, culture, night life

Cons: Expensive

It’s pretty common for Skid grads to flee to New York.  This is obviously because of the sheer size and fact that ‘how could I not find a job there, right?!’ NYC is so full of life and culture and seems like the logical place to start for twenty-somethings.  You’ll never be bored again and you’ll never find another city with such a diverse array of people. “The city that never sleeps” is perfect for young college grads ready for an exciting nightlife scene. However, some students head there only to discover that the big city is just too much… and too expensive. As much as the Girls lifestyle seems appealing, chances are you won’t find an apartment nearly as nice as Hannah’s on a minimum wage salary. We’re thinking more along the lines of Bronx chic…

Boston, MA

Pros: Manageable size, young population, clean

Cons: Limited nightlife

Boston is a nice, smaller alternative to NYC for those die-hard east coasters who aren’t ready for the big-time Big Apple. For the size of Boston, it has a surprising amount of colleges and universities. This makes for a large twenty year-old population and therefore affordable housing in certain areas (i.e., Allston) where many college students live year-round. The city is also clean, with beautiful historical buildings and parks a plenty. Warning: if you’re not ready to give up your college late night lifestyle (and we’re not…), Boston might not be the place for you. Bars close at 2 a.m. at the latest and subways stop running around 12:30 a.m, at least for now…yikes.

Chicago, IL

Pros: Affordable, culture

Cons: Cold

As the third largest U.S. city (behind NYC and LA), Chicago is surprisingly affordable.  While most of the cities on this list made the Top Ten Priciest U.S. Cities to Rent an Apartment, Chicago did not! You have a chance of indulging in big city entertainment and delicious food while still sleeping with a roof over your head… yay! Chi-Town also has tons of different neighborhoods to explore and is large like NYC but more low-key. If you’ve become one with the snow at Skidmore, Chicago weather won’t come as much of a shock to you.  But if you’re ready for a change, steer clear of this windy, frigid city…

Los Angeles, CA

Pros: Sunny, beaches, hot actors

Cons: Poor transportation

If you’re one of the Skiddies that is done with Antarctic temperatures and knee-length North Faces, head to the west coast. Treat yourself for putting up with the endless snow by moving to the land of gorgeous beaches.  According to a recent (and very familiar) Cosmopolitan article, LA is also the best U.S. city to meet guys… but we won’t go down that road. Keep in mind that it’s difficult to get around LA without a car, and even with a car, driving can be a nightmare.  The city is very spread out and full of multi-lane highways.


Portland, OR and Seattle, WA

Pros: Progressive, natural setting

Cons: Rain

We’re grouping Portland and Seattle together because they have similar pros and cons, but obviously these are two completely unique cities. Portland seems to be attracting hipsters at a rapid pace (which may or may not be due to Portlandia), and for good reason. It’s a very progressive city with countless creative outlets and grassroots/local initiatives, as is Seattle. Both boast forward-thinkers, generally friendly populations, and beautiful, hike-able landscapes in close proximity. However, if you plan on living in either of these cities, say goodbye to sun for a while (specifically for 300 days of the year…).

Austin, TX

Pros: Laid back, young population

Cons: Location, traffic

Coming from Skidmore, Texas might be a bit of a cultural (and climate) shock. But hey, us Skiddies are ready for adventure, so bring it on! Austin is an exciting, cultural hub in the center of Texas, full of music, art, and a generally laid-back atmosphere.  However, things get pretty desolate once you leave Austin (think billboards and flat dry land) and it’s a long drive to get out of Texas, so road trips won’t be too scenic. But if you’re planning on staying put for a while, Austin might have everything you’re looking for.


With graduation right around the corner (sorry…), it’s time to plan in some way.  If you’re not ready to take the career plunge quite yet, city searching is a good place to start. 

Where do YOU want to live after graduation? Tell us in the comments!